AFL Beat 2018 Round 17

This week,

Someone gave a Dangerhug
The Blues became the Greys
And the Pink didn’t have the desired effect

Welcome to Balls of Steel’s AFL Beat!


Round 17 Recaps and Highlights

The Round started off with my Geelong Cats visiting the Adelaide Crows after upsetting the Sydney Swans in Sydney.  Did the Cats have two road upsets in a row in them?

Unfortunately not.  They did well to stage a nice comeback in the fourth to get the game within single figures, but the Crows held on at the end for the 112-97 win.  Here are the highlights:

On proper Friday night, the St. Kilda Saints took on the Carlton Blues in a golden opportunity to get away from the Wooden Spoon position and try to make something of this bad season.  They took full advantage and easily took care of the sad and disappointing Blues by a score of 116-52.  Highlights:

The next game started late, so I only got to see a little bit of the first quarter.  The Lions, as usual, were playing well, but were behind on the scoreboard.  Well, imagine my surprise when I woke up on Saturday morning and found out that the Lions not only erased that early deficit, but went on to dominate the second half and finished with a healthy and respectful 98-65 win.  Well done, Lions!  That’s three wins in a row and the future is looking brighter.  Here are the highlights:

We knew this was coming.  We knew that when the Melbourne Demons got a chance to host the Western Bulldogs after bad games by the Demons and good games by the Doggies that things would even out.  Indeed they did, Kenny Blankenship, as the Doggies scored a NICE 69 to the Demons’ 119.  Highlights:

There were two late late night games and the first had Richmond visiting GWS in Sydney.  As mentioned in the preview, this is a game the GWS Giants HAD to have in order to stay in the finals conversation.  It went down to the wire:

That’s a huge win for the Giants and it brings the Tigers back to the pack.  They are still ahead on percentage, but the prospect of a home finals run is getting weaker.  Here are the full game highlights:

In the second game, the Gold Coast Suns hosted the Essendon Bombers, who were trying desperately to save their season and keep a finals spot within reach. In order to do that, they had to erase a half-time deficit and then pull away in the fourth.  They got a 95-51 win that keeps them alive for another week.  Highlights:

Without a doubt, the Match of the Round going in was going to be the Collingwood Magpies – West Coast Eagles clash at the MCG on North American Saturday night.  I hope everyone tuned in to watch as I requested last week.  Those that did were witnesses to a great game.  A great second quarter proved to be the difference as the Eagles held off a tough Magpies team.  Final score was 102-67 and here are the highlights:

In the next game, the Sydney Swans visited the North Melbourne Kangaroos after last week’s embarrassing defeat at home to the Cats. For some reason, the Swans play much better this year on the road than at home.  Everything was tied with two minutes to go…

That’s an Al Michaels YUGE victory for the Swans as it keeps them in the Top Four conversation while keeping the Roos out of the Eight for now.  Here are the full game highlights:

In the last game of the Round, the Port Adelaide Power traveled to Perth to take on the Fremantle Dockers.  As I wrote in the preview last week, this was a game that Port was in danger of dropping due to a combination of the Perth home field advantage, an undeserved overconfidence in facing an underachieving Dockers team, and the plain old “This is what Port does”.

Well, we were right.  Fremantle came away with the home win and maintain their super Victoria’s Secret Model Slim hopes for a finals berth alive.  Highlights:

Let’s take a look at the ladder, shall we?

1 Richmond Tigers 12 4 0 48 135.0
2 West Coast Eagles 12 4 0 48 122.4
3 Collingwood Magpies 11 5 0 44 117.6
4 Sydney Swans 11 5 0 44 117.3
5 Port Adelaide Power 11 5 0 44 115.9
6 Melbourne Demons 10 6 0 40 130.2
7 GWS Giants 9 6 1 38 111.1
8 Geelong Cats 9 7 0 36 119.5
9 North Melbourne Kangaroos 9 7 0 36 114.2
10 Hawthorn Hawks 9 7 0 36 114.0
11 Adelaide Crows 8 8 0 32 98.7
12 Essendon Bombers 8 8 0 32 97.7
13 Fremantle Dockers 7 9 0 28 83.6
14 Western Bulldogs 5 11 0 20 73.1
15 St. Kilda Saints 4 11 1 18 77.8
16 Brisbane Lions 4 12 0 16 91.7
17 Gold Coast Suns 3 13 0 12 62.2
18 Carlton Blues 1 15 0 4 60.9

The Balls (TM) graph:

Download (PDF, 276KB)


Footy Tipping Contest

Here is where we are after Round 17:

P TIPPER Round Tips Round Margin TOTAL Tips TOTAL Margin
1 SonOfSpam 4 21 105 422
2 Sunrisesunrise 3 20 102 464
3 Spanky Datass 4 15 98 534
4 Litre_cola 5 24 97 417
5 BALLS 4 28 97 476
6 WhyEaglesWhy 4 9 93 460
7 Dolph Ucker 6 4 90 591
8 BFC 3 32 87 470
9 Joliet Jake Delhomme 4 15 87 477
10 JPF 4 15 80 485
11 Game Time Decision 6 3 79 552
12 nomonkeyfun 4 15 75 449
13 blaxabbath 4 15 65 495
14 Sharkbait 4 15 63 538

It seems every week some positions flip flop.  A hearty well-done, AGAIN, to Game Time Decision who shared top score this week with Dolph Ucker and continues to shoot up the standings.

As for those of you that haven’t stuck the footy tips in, I really have been way too lenient on the gifs.  Enjoy one gif for each tipper that forgot to put the tips in

It’s classy in black and white

Yes, I saved the most disturbing for last…



AFL Round 18

Here is the schedule for this week (all times Pacific):

Friday, July 20, 2018

2:50 AM (Late Thursday Night) – St. Kilda Saints v Richmond Tigers at Marvel Stadium

Back to Back home games for the Saints, but they don’t get the luxury of drawing the Blues this time.  Instead, they get the Tigers coming off a tough loss in Sydney.  Yeah, that’s not good.

8:45 PM – Collingwood Magpies v North Melbourne Kangaroos at the MCG

This is now a much more interesting matchup considering both of these teams lost important games this week.  If the Roos lose again, they can probably kiss finals goodbye.

9:10 PM – Sydney Swans v Gold Coast Suns at the SCG

We finally get a choice of games on proper Friday night!  Unfortunately, I think this one won’t be the compelling and competitive option.

11:35 PM  – Essendon Bombers v Fremantle Dockers at Marvel Stadium

If the Bombers have ANY chance of playing Finals Footy, they HAVE to win this game. Same for Fremantle,  which makes this game a defacto elimination final.

Saturday,  July 21, 2018

2:25 AM (Late Friday Night) – Brisbane Lions v Adelaide Crows at the Gabba

Was anyone else really pleasantly surprised that the Lions were able to go to Tasmania and beat the Hawks there?  Adelaide has been up and down all season and I can easily see them dropping this one in Queensland.

2:25 AM (Late Friday Night) – Geelong Cats v Melbourne Demons at Kardinia Park

On the bright side, it’s a true home game and it comes after an embarrasing loss, so the Cats should prevail.  Of course, weird things have been known to happen to this team…

8:10 PM – Carlton Blues v Hawthorn Hawks at Marvel Stadium

Wow, the Hawks couldn’t have asked for a better opponent coming off an upset loss.  This could be over by Quarter Time.

10:20 PM – West Coast Eagles v Western Bulldogs at Optus Stadium

The Eagles won the battle but may have lost the proverbial war as Nic Natanui got hurt and is likely out for the season.  The surrounding cast is good enough to beat the Doggies at home, but anything else going forward is a big question mark.

11:40 PM – Port Adelaide Power v GWS Giants at Adelaide Stadium

Probably the Match of the Round.  This is GWS’s great chance to ensure a place in the Eight.  At the same time, should the Power lose, their spot in the Eight could be in jeopardy


That’s all for this week.  The last few weeks of the Home and Away season are upon us and Finals beckon.  There are legitimately 13 teams with a chance at the eight although results next week could narrow that down to 10.  It’s the best time to watch!

See you next week!



International Member of the Geelong Cats and recovering Steelers fan. Likes Butts. And Balls. And Boobs. Pretty much anything that starts with the letter B. Preferably together.

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Brick Meathook
Brick Meathook

Look at those AFL players and you can really see the prison convict DNA.


I suck at our tipping contest but am thrilled the Giants pulled that one out. Toby Greene is a difference maker.



MICHAEL JACKSON: Why’d they put you in here?

JARRYD ROUGHHEAD: Cause I wore a pink shirt to work.


Oh! Good one!